In Zambia, they describe the wetlands as “the place where the water meets the sky.” It’s an environment that supports tens of thousands of small-scale farming households; communities who rely on what they can grow, to earn a living and support their families.
The wetlands are also fragile – with population growth, over farming and poor land use threatening an ecosystem that families need for their very survival.
This year’s Big Give Christmas Challenge will support Self Help Africa’s work with 3,000 households in the wetlands of the Kafue Flats; a massive expanse of open lagoon, swamp and seasonal flood plains along the basin of the Zambezi River.
For seven days only, from 1st – 8th December, every contribution, big or small, that’s made to us through The Big Give will be doubled, meaning that we can achieve twice as much with your donation.
Support from The Big Give will enable us to promote various ‘climate smart’ agricultural techniques, including the production and use of compost and natural fertilisers. It will assist communities with the creation of natural resource management committees, charged with raising awareness of the damaging effects of deforestation and promoting alternative means for farming families to earn a living from the wetlands.
A three-year project (2019 – 2022), PRESERVE has created 100 producer groups to commercially produce horticultural and food crops. It has provided training, established savings and credit groups and assisted them in sourcing markets to sell their new crops.
“The long-term viability of the wetlands will ultimately be decided by the people who live on it, and rely on it, to provide them with a living,” says Self Help Africa’s local director, Elia Manda.
“By raising awareness of the dangers of over-farming, over-fishing and of felling trees without replacing them, and by introducing alternative crops and farming practices, we can show the people of Kafue both the problem, and the solutions to the challenges that they face,” he added.
Donations to this project via theBigGive.org.uk will be matched for 7 days from 12pm (midday) on 1st December. An amazing £8,000 of match-funding is available and donations will be doubled until the funds run out. To find out more call us on 01743 277170 or e-mail [email protected]